Highlighting Women at UN Week

Okyereko Rice Cooperative Association

Yesterday was the beginning of a busy week in New York City as leaders from around the world arrive for the opening session of the United Nations General Assembly. I attended two events yesterday that highlighted the importance of women in development. Early yesterday morning the White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood hosted a gathering of leading women in the US. It was a chance for them to hear directly from healthcare workers in Africa who play a critical role in helping women deliver their babies safely. Speakers included Sarah Brown, Arianna Huffington, President and Editor-in-Chief for AOL Huffington Post Media Group and Donna Karan, Founder of Urban Zen Foundation.

Later in the day, I went to a panel sponsored by the Department of State on Women and Agriculture with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, USAID Administrator Dr. Raj Shah and New York Times columnist Nick Kristof. Secretary Clinton made a compelling argument that investing in women farmers is not only the right thing to do, but also makes economic sense.

I personally saw that first hand in my travels to Malawi, Kenya and Tanzania over the past year, and am glad to see the role of women recognized and celebrated here in New York City. By investing in women, we invest in the whole community. Please follow me @SheilaNix as I Tweet the rest of the week.